Ceramic artist Sonja Kastner was born in Namibia where, growing up on a narrow strip of land between the desert and the ocean, she was always fascinated by the seemingly monotonous yet ever changing textures, patterns and colours of the landscape. This inspired her to pursue a career which would involve art and design.
After completing her diploma in Textile Design at the Ruth Prowse School of Art, she worked as designer and range coordinator for a large fabric mill in Cape Town for 15 years. During this time she also developed a passion for clay and attended various courses and workshops to learn more about this medium and was given the opportunity to exhibit locally as well as internationally in group exhibitions.
In 1996 Sonja decided to pursue her passion for clay and ceramics on a full-time basis. From her studio in Hout Bay, she started designing and producing a range of crockery, available from select shops throughout South Africa. She also started giving workshops on surface decoration and design on bisqueware.
Moving her life and her studio to the delightful village of Pringle Bay in 2015, Sonja is currently exploring the process of photo lithographic printing, whereby photocopied images and drawings can be transferred onto clay, based on the repulsion of water and grease. This allows her to combine her love of design and colour to produce one-off quirky works, always with hidden messages about the things that inspire her, be it observations about everyday life, human triumphs and failures, nature, plants and the environment.